I don’t know why I was attracted to this story in a local Indiana newspaper. Perhaps it was because I recently taught this text. Whatever the case, I think it’s cool that Grace College, a Christian college in Winona Lake, Indiana, now has a bowling team! Congrats!
Here is the press release:
WINONA LAKE – Grace College is pleased to announce the addition of men’s and women’s bowling to the sports lineup.
Bowling will remain a club sport for the first year with an eye to progress toward varsity status in 2021.
Grace’s Director of Athletics Chad Briscoe also announced the hiring of the program’s first full-time head coach, Rob McDonald, who will direct the men’s and women’s programs.
McDonald is a mainstay in the area for bowling. He has helped coach at Warsaw since 2013, including serving as the head coach of the girls’ team since 2015.
“We look forward to Coach McDonald leading our bowling programs at Grace. He has a tremendous passion for Christian excellence and desire to impact lives through bowling,” Briscoe said. “His experience and extensive background coaching a successful high school program will serve him well as he recruits and establishes the culture of our program.”
While coaching the Tigers, McDonald has led Warsaw to two sectional championships and a conference title in 2013-14. The Tigers have reached the semi-state level twice (2013-14, 2016-17).
On an individual level, McDonald has proven to guide student-athletes to state-wide success. During each of the past five seasons, a Tiger has qualified for semi-state, including two bowlers in 2016-17.
“I am excited for this opportunity, not only to help Grace enter the bowling realm, but even more to help spread God’s love through the sport of bowling. I am humbled by the opportunity to share my knowledge of the sport,” McDonald said. “This is an exciting new chapter in my career as a bowling coach, and I am proud to be taking this step with Grace College.”
Grace is poised to become the fifth Crossroads League school to add varsity bowling. The sport is one of the fastest-growing in the country.
Bowling was recognized as an NAIA championships sport for the first time in 2019-20. There are currently over 100 men’s and women’s teams competing at the NAIA level.
It marks the second sport Grace has added recently, joining the newly-launched esports program led by Andrew Palladino.